Longwood East Road, South Featherston, FEATHERSTON

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Longwood is among New Zealand's largest, architecturally accomplished and historically most significant country estates. Designed by John Swan (1874-1936), Longwood Homestead was built in 1906 for the Pharazyns, a prominent Wairarapa run holding family, as a country house, in the English tradition. It replaced a former house on the site dating from circa 1857, begun by Longwood's first owner Henry Bunny (1823-1891). Some of the outbuildings of Longwood date from this early period. Charles Buckland Pharazyn sold Longwood in 1911 to Dan (1883-1971) and Meta (1883-1963) Riddiford who, in 1921, modified and substantially extended the house to a Lutyens-inspired design by William Gray Young (1885-1962). The Riddifords were part of Wairarapa's pastoral elite and used Longwood to showcase their high social status and wealth. During the 1920s and 30s the couple hosted numerous important visitors and society events. After 1945 Longwood declined in social importance and in 1989 the Riddiford family sold it. The present owners Marguerite Tait-Jamieson and Garrick Emms bought it in 1992 and turned it into a country lodge. They have restored and renovated many of the outbuildings and maintained the extensive garden. Longwood merits registration as a Category I historic place. The property has been home to three significant run holding families, the Bunnys, the Pharazyns and the Riddifords, with each adding to, or extending the homestead and outbuildings in line with, and to display, their social status. Longwood illustrates the considerable wealth and power these families held, and exemplifies the mimicry by New Zealand's pastoral elite of their British counterparts. As such it has historical, aesthetic, social and cultural value. The Outbuildings themselves, the Gamekeeper's Cottage; The Granary; The Cowshed; Coachhouse and Stables; Generator Shed; Longwood Polo Stables and Garages and the Greenhouse are also historically significant. Among New Zealand's oldest farm buildings, they are considered rare compared to similar buildings, of a similar age, because of their size. The Homestead has significant architectural merit, designed by Wellington architect John Swan before being modified to a Lutyens-inspired design by noted architect Gray Young.

Longwood, Featherston. Image courtesy of longwood.co.nz | longwood.co.nz
Longwood, Featherston 2006. The Granary with the Gamekeeper’s Cottage at left | Alison Dangerfield | Heritage New Zealand
Longwood, Featherston 2006. Gamekeeper’s Cottage | Alison Dangerfield | Heritage New Zealand



List Entry Information


Detailed List Entry



List Entry Status

Historic Place Category 1


Private/No Public Access

List Number


Date Entered

5th May 2007

Date of Effect

5th May 2007

City/District Council

South Wairarapa District


Wellington Region

Extent of List Entry

Registration includes the land described in Lots 1 and 2, DP 75730 and Pt Lot 3 DP 68757, Wellington Land District; Longwood Homestead and its fittings and fixtures; the Homestead grounds, Longwood outbuildings and their fittings and fixtures (including the Cookhouse; The Granary; The Cowshed; Coachhouse and Stables; Generator Shed; Longwood Polo Stables and Garages; Glasshouse).

Legal description

Lot 1 DP 75730 (WN42D/35); Lot 2 DP 75730 (WN42D/36); Pt Lot 3 DP 68757 (WN42D/35), Wellington Land District.

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